Preview of Lanesborough Annual Town Meeting

Preview of Lanesborough Annual Town Meeting

The Lanesborough Annual Town Meeting is set to take place at 6 p.m. on Tuesday at Lanesborough Elementary School, located at 188 Summer St. This year’s meeting will address several key issues, including the approval of an $11.8 million budget, which represents a 4.32 percent increase from the previous year. A significant portion of this budget, $6.82 million, is allocated to the Mount Greylock and Northern Berkshire Vocational regional school districts. The schools’ budget has increased by $237,129, making up nearly half of the overall budget increase.

One of the notable warrant articles to be discussed involves the implementation of a 6 percent excise tax on rental properties and a 3 percent impact fee on professionally managed short-term rentals. These measures aim to regulate and generate revenue from the growing rental market in the town.

Other important items on the agenda include a proposal to allocate $188,559 for the ambulance enterprise fund. This fund is supported by ambulance enterprise user fees and the town’s general budget. Additionally, $38,000 is requested for the local access television enterprise fund to cover salaries and expenses for installing equipment in the community room.

The town is also considering a $65,000 expenditure to purchase and equip a new police vehicle. The cost will be shared between the Baker Hill Road District Fund and free cash. Another significant expenditure is $125,000 to replace a 2014 one-ton highway dump truck.

In terms of governance, there is a proposal to delete a finance committee bylaw related to the removal of committee members for non-attendance to comply with state statute. Another article seeks to accept an annual consumer price index increase for senior property tax exemptions.

The town is also looking to amend its bylaws to allow for accessory dwelling units to be a maximum of 2,500 square feet, up from the current limit of 900 square feet. Additionally, a citizens’ petition is on the table to increase the Select Board membership from three to five members.

For those who need accommodations, such as a town report in Braille or another language, the Town Administrative Assistant can be contacted at [email protected].

The meeting promises to be a significant event for the town, addressing a range of financial, regulatory, and governance issues that will impact the community in the coming year.

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